Students receive around-the-world education in new program

Published in FSD Update

By 
Mallory Szczepanski, Digital Production Editor

In October, The Nutrition Group, the food management company based in Irwin, Pa., launched a new companywide food education program called Take Nutrition Global.

Foodservice employees teamed up with consumer science and language teachers to create a monthly cafeteria program where students are introduced to healthy foods and facts from around the world. The program’s goal is to introduce students to unique and ethnic foods, while also teaching where the food comes from.

“This [program] is a chance for foodservice directors to talk to students about what they like, what they don’t like and how willing they are to try new things,” says The Nutrition Group’s Michelle Marker, director of programs.

High school students have monthly taste testings of the program’s items. Any featured recipes the high school students like are added to the regular lunch menu.

To incorporate education into the program, an information table is set up in the cafeteria where students are given a handout with country facts, a map and recipes to take home.

“The students look forward to the handouts, and teachers are excited to participate in the program,” Marker says. “The students are curious and always asking what will be featured next month, even though we try to keep that a surprise.”

The program has even helped break the language barrier between foodservice staff and students and has helped connect the staff and school boards, which are made up of people who often don’t make it into the cafeterias to see the program in action. During each monthly school board meeting, foodservice directors present the Take Nutrition Global items to inform them on what the program will be featuring that month.

“Every school is different and every school has different students,” Marker says. “What works at one school doesn’t mean that it will work at another. This is a good way for our foodservice directors to test new items and weigh out what works and what doesn’t at each school.”

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion
Shedd Aquarium White Sox Shedd The Straw

The Chicago White Sox have partnered with the Shedd Aquarium to support their “Shedd the Straw” initiative: a plan that the groups expect to curb the use of plastic straws by about 215,000 this baseball season.

Beginning on Earth Day, April 22, drinks at all dining locations throughout the Sox’s Guaranteed Rate Field will not be automatically served with plastic straws. Guests will be provided with biodegradable straws upon request. Guaranteed Rate Field is said to be the first in Major League Baseball to ban the use of plastic straws.

“At one of Shedd Aquarium’s local...

Industry News & Opinion

The Henry P. Kendall Foundation, a philanthropic group that aims to create a more sustainable food system in New England, has announced its creation of the New England Food Vision Prize .

The foundation is inviting foodservice leaders from colleges and universities throughout New England to submit their ideas on how to create a stronger food system that will help the region produce at least half of its own food by 2060.

Qualifying ideas must be collaborative and replicable, among other requirements. The foundation hopes that by reaching out to large food purchasers, like...

Industry News & Opinion
CP building

Central Point School District in Central Point, Ore., is sprucing up its lunch program by adding more locally produced foods and scratch-made dishes, KDRV reports.

A nutritionist and chef from the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council trained school staff on 15 new recipes with the goal of upgrading the school lunch menu.

The ongoing project has been successfully implemented in other Oregon school districts over the last eight years. The trainings focus on Oregon State University Extension Food Hero recipes that meet USDA nutrition standards and incorporate locally sourced...

Industry News & Opinion

Carson City School District in Carson City, Nev., hosted its Breakfast with a Hero event this week, Carson Now reports.

Held at an elementary school, the event invited local law enforcement to serve breakfast and eat with students. Officials say the event was intended to help students connect and engage with local officers in a casual setting.

Read the full story via carsonnow.org .

Photo by Dan Davis at Carson City School District

FSD Resources